The Official Publication of the InterNational Electrical Testing Association

Fall – Winter 2004

Back to the Basics — Current Transformer Testing


s test equipment becomes more sophisticated with better features and accuracy, we risk turning our field personnel into test-set operators instead of skilled field service technicians. A test-set operator connects the leads, pushes the buttons, and records the results, hoping the numbers he records are good. A test technician connects the leads, pushes the buttons, and records the results. However, the test technician understands what the test set was doing while all the lights were flashing, and why. The technician can also evaluate the results and determine if a retest is necessary with different connections or substitute external equipment for tests when the test equipment malfunctions. The purpose of this article is to help a test-set operator understand the tests he performs, reinforce a test technique, or add it to his repertoire.

Chris Werstiuk Valence USA
Reprinted with permission of the InterNational Electrical Testing Association. Copyright 2004. All rights reserved.

Description of Operation
During normal operation, a current transformer (CT) transforms higher current into a more manageable secondary current. This transformation is made possible by copper coils wrapped around an iron core, with the ratio between primary and secondary currents determined by the ratio between the number of primary and secondary turns. Bar- and windowtype CTs do not have a physical primary winding and are considered to have one primary turn. When current flows through the primary winding, the following actions occur: • The iron core inside the transformer is magnetized. • The magnetic field in the iron core induces a voltage in the secondary coils. • If the secondary circuit is closed, a current flows through the secondary circuit in proportion to the CT ratio. The current transformation requires a small amount of energy to magnetize the iron core that creates small energy losses such as eddy currents, and heat caused by current flowing through the windings. Therefore, the secondary current is not a perfect representation of the primary current. All CTs that are built to ANSI standards have an accuracy class to outline what effect the losses have on the secondary current under normal conFall–Winter 2004

ditions. The accuracy class is the minimum accuracy guaranteed by the manufacturer, although the CT may be built to higher standards. Like every other transformer, CTs can only transform a finite amount of energy. This is usually the voltampere rating for normal transformers. The CTs energy limitation is included in the accuracy class but is shown as a maximum burden. The CT burden is the amount of impedance (ac resistance) connected to the CT secondaries and is usually rated in

These are typically wound CTs.ohms or volts.988 0.003 1. The manufacturer only guarantees CT accuracy up to a maximum burden rating.2 B-0.012 1.1 Protection-class CTs have the letters C. The ratio determines the CT’s operating characteristics and is used as reference for tests.3 percent as long as the CT burden rating is not exceeded. If the CT has multiple taps (different possible ratio combinations). CORRECTION FACTOR LIMITS FOR CTs ACCURACY CLASS 1.976 0. L.9 0.5 Visual and Mechanical Inspections Equipment Specifications While performing visual and mechanical inspections. For example.1 B-0. These CTs are often used to record power consumption and are the basis for electrical bills.5C100 protection-class CT is accurate within 2. In other words. or T to indicate the protection-class rating. if both ratings are listed on the nameplate.2 0.5 0.5 100% RATED CURRENT MIN 0. This will allow a review of the options without visiting the site beforehand. Current-Transformer Class: The second part of the accuracy class is a letter. STANDARD BURDENS FOR STANDARD 5-AMP / 60 Hz SECONDARY CURRENT TRANSFORMERS STANDARD SECONDARY BURDEN RATINGS BURDEN DESIGNATION B-0.2 0. A typical metering-class CT has an accuracy class similar to 0. The letter distinguishes for what application the CT is rated.006 1. which are described in conjuction with Figure 2.9 0.998 0.1 metering-class CT is accurate within 0. Ratio: The CT ratio is the most important piece of information regarding the CT and must be recorded from the nameplate or the design criteria.5 1 2 4 8 VOLT AMPS (VA) 2. • A T-rating indicates that the CT can have significant leakage flux.3B0. hence the need for accuracy. and CT performance will degrade if the secondary burden is larger than rated. new.5 percent if the CT burden rating is not exceeded.005 10% RATED CURRENT MIN 0.5 0.006 1.3 0.005 Figure 1b — CT Accuracy Classes and Correction Factors Accuracy: The first number in the CT accuracy class is the rated ratio accuracy in percent. • An L-rating indicates that the CT accuracy applies at the maximum-rated secondary burden at 20 times rated only. The serial number can also be used when ordering replacement or new CTs from manufacturers. Model Number (when possible): The model number is important when comparing test results to manufacturer’s literature and ordering replacement.994 0. the ratio of a 0. Accuracy Class: The CT accuracy class comprises a number-letter-number combination and indicates the CT’s ability to perform accurately under different conditions. They are designed for maximum accuracy from very low currents to the maximum CT rating. The ratio accuracy can be up to four NETA WORLD Figure 1a — CT Accuracy Classes and Correction Factors 2 . always compare equipment nameplate data with drawings and specifications. A CT can have ratings for both groups.012 1.5 5 12. The CT accuracy class is made up of three parts. Every CT test sheet should include the following information: Serial Number (when possible): The serial number is important to organize test results and allow a reference when comparing test results to manufacturer’s specifications. Metering-class CTs have the letter B in the accuracyclass rating.995 MAX 1.9 0. H. and the CT accuracy must be obtained by testing in the factory.995 MAX 1. • An H-rating indicates that the CT accuracy rating is applicable within the entire range of secondary currents from five to 20 times the nominal CT rating.5 25 50 100 200 POWER FACTOR 0. or spare CTs from manufacturers.3B0.5 B-1 B-2 B-4 B-8 IMPEDANCE OHMS 0. See Figure 1 for a list of typical accuracy classes. • A C-rating indicates that the CT accuracy can be calculated before construction because there is no appreciable leakage flux in the CT design. A CT can have dual ratings and be used in metering or protection applications. CTs can be separated into two distinct groups: metering and protection or relay.6 0.024 1.997 0.994 0. The ratio of a 2.1 0.5 0. the CT accuracy class indicates the CT’s performance characteristics and the maximum burden allowable on the CT secondaries. all taps should be recorded for future reference in case a new ratio is required for the application.

• Bushing CTs are window CTs specially constructed to fit around a bushing. Protection-class CTs are not as accurate as metering-class CTs but are designed to operate over a wider range of current.0 OHMS CT CLASS “C” = DONUT CT WITH CALCULATED % ACCURACY “T” = % ACCURACY TESTED IN FACTORY “H” = ACCURACY APPLIES UP TO 20x CT NOMINAL AMPS “L” = ACCURACY CAN VARY UP TO 4x RATING DEPENDING ON LOAD Figure 2 — Understanding CT Ratings core to transform the current to the appropriate secondary output. incorrect bracing. For example. bushing. The CT should be permanently mounted and not supported by the primary conductor. Voltage Class: The CT voltage class determines the maximum voltage with which a CT can be in direct contact.5C100. For example. Burden: The third part of the accuracy-class rating follows the letter and indicates the maximum burden allowed. CT Type: The four typical CT types include window. bar. and their nameplates are found on the transformer or circuit-breaker control cabinets. A typical protection-class CT has an accuracy class similar to 2.5 percent if the secondary burden is less than 1. A 0. a 600-volt window CT can be installed around a 2400-volt cable if the CT is installed around the insulated portion of the cable and the insulation is rated correctly. a 2. split core CTs can be installed around the primary conductor without disconnecting the primary conductor. depending on the connected burden and fault current. the ratio of a 0.0 ohm (100 volts / 100 amperes). and general overall condition. 3 . However. These are typically window.6 percent accuracy if the secondary burden does not exceed 8. Window CTs can be of solid or split core construction. a 600-volt window CT cannot be installed on or around a bare 2400-volt conductor.1 ohms. Metering-class CT burdens are displayed as secondary ohms. This step is often the most critical step performed. • Window CTs are the most common.3 Ohms) CT CLASS – “B” = METERING PROTECTION CLASS 2. Physical and Mechanical Condition Verify the physical and mechanical condition of the CT.1 rated CT is accurate to 0. bushing. This wider range is necessary to allow the protective relay to operate at different fault levels.times greater than the listed value. These CTs are rare and are usually used at very low ratios and currents. Incorrect CT connections can cause significant problems on any polarity-sensitive metering or protection scheme such as generator protection (IEEE 32. They are constructed with no primary winding and are installed around the primary conductor. and special attention to the source CT burden should be applied when wound CTs are used. The electric field created by current flowing through the conductor interacts with the CT Fall–Winter 2004 METERING CLASS 0. If the CT secondary-burden rating is exceeded. The primary conductor must be disconnected when installing solid window CTs. Usually they cannot be accessed. to match different CT ratios in summing applications. CT accuracy is not guaranteed.3 MAXIMUM BURDEN IN OHMS (0.0 ohms.3 percent if the connected secondary burden impedance does not exceed 0. and wound. Protection-class CTs are typically rated to operate accurately up to 20 times the CT rating.6B8 rated metering-class CT will operate within 0. • Bar-type CTs operate on the same principle of window CTs but have a permanent bar installed as a primary conductor.5 ACCURACY IN PERCENT (%) C 100 MAXIMUM BURDEN IN VOLTS @ 20* CT AMP RATING (100A) MAXIMUM OHMS = BURDEN/100 = 100/100 = 1.3B0. or bar-type CTs. Protection-class CT burdens are displayed as the maximum secondary volts allowable if 20 times (100 amperes with a five-ampere nominal CT secondary) the CT rating were to flow through the secondary circuit. However. cracks. For example. typically in CT secondary circuits to compensate for low currents.3 ACCURACY IN PERCENT (%) B 0. When possible. Wound CTs have very high burdens.5C100 protection-class CT is accurate within 2. Correct Connection of Transformers Verify the correct connection of transformers with system requirements. • Wound CTs have a primary and secondary winding like a normal transformer. or to isolate different CT circuits. the CT should be inspected for shipping damage.

When applicable.9 respectively in the NETA specifications. perform insulation-resistance and dielectric-withstand tests on the primary winding with the secondary grounded. For units with solid-state components. This method is a quick and easy test for polarity. V CT Electrical Tests Insulation-Resistance Test In accordance with NETA specifications. Measure the resistance between both sides of the terminal block to ground before removing the shorting device to ensure the device is operating correctly. I recommend isolating the CTs from the external wir4 TEST LEAD H1 PRIMARY CONDUCTOR H2 PRIMARY CONDUCTOR X1 X2 10:5 A CT + - 12V Figure 3 — DC Polarity Test Circuit Window Type CT NETA WORLD . the transformer vacuum is not perfect. Also check that the secondary wiring is not run parallel and/or close to the primary conductor to prevent any current from being induced into the secondary path. For this test. (Sticky backs are not considered permanent. used before electricity was discovered by some accounts. Although a perfect vacuum is a perfect insulator. CTs are always shipped with shorting devices installed if the burden circuit cannot be completed at the factory. 67.) Always perform an excitation/saturation test after performing this test. In many instances. ground. and test leads are required. the connection is as important as the CT polarity. (Quick rule-of-thumb: one inch per kilovolt plus one inch.13. If the primary polarity of a CT is reversed. The measured resistance should be negligible.) Remember that line-to-line voltages apply between phases. relays must be weighed against the benefit of the test. Always check to ensure that the shorting devices are removed on in-service CTs just prior to energization.40. a dc battery. Two wrongs often make a right when working with CT connections. All wiring above the primary conductor should be permanently affixed to the structure to prevent the wiring from falling onto the primary conductors in the future. but there is a possibility that it may leave remnant flux in the CT. There are two generally accepted methods of testing a CT’s polarity using simple meters and connections: • DC Kick/Flick Test: This is the tried and true method for testing CT polarity. Use test voltages in accordance with Tables 100. and secondary conductor to ensure adequate clearance. “Perform insulation-resistance tests to ground of the CT and wiring at 1000 volts dc. line protection (IEEE 21. Investigate any measurement below 100 megohms. 67). Connect the positive of the voltmeter to the H1 (marked) terminal of the high-voltage side of the CT and the negative lead to the H2 as shown in Figure 3. Inspect the space between the CT phases. Polarity Test Perform a polarity test of each current transformer. 12V / (10/5) = 6 V 10V SCALE + TEST LEAD Grounding and Shorting Connection Verify that all required grounding and shorting connections provide contact. Remnant flux may cause saturation when the CT is next energized. All three CTs can be tested simultaneously. The steps of the dc kick/flick test are as follows: 1.” When electromechanical relays were king. a dc voltmeter or ammeter (preferably analog). In the age of microprocessor relays.) ing at the first terminal block or test point and applying the test voltage between the CT and ground. The CTs should remain shorted until the secondary wiring is complete and loop-tested.1. and there is a strong possibility of causing a flashover inside the transformer. or differential elements (IEEE 87).3. Adequate Clearances Verify that adequate clearances exist between primary and secondary circuit wiring. paragraph 4. the secondary wiring can also be reversed to achieve the desired overall polarity. Never perform this test on bushing CTs while the power transformer is under vacuum.5 and 100. (See C57. more sensitive. insulation-resistance tests of CTs and wiring were an acceptable method of testing the entire circuit including the internal relay wiring. the risk of damage to the new. follow manufacturer’s recommendations. 78).

Connect a voltmeter (VM3) from the polarity mark of the H winding to the nonpolarity mark of the X winding. the polarity marks are correct. the polarity marks are incorrect. (Battery voltage/CT ratio. run a wire through the CT and connect your meter across the wire.) 3. Review the CT drawing carefully and note the CT polarity and meter polarity. Use the following steps to test for CT polarity using the ac method.) Fall–Winter 2004 . a variable transformer and voltmeter (preferably two) are required. It should jump in the positive direction. (See Figure 4. Review the CT drawing carefully and note the CT polarity and meter polarity. This method is limited by the accuracy of the meters and may not be reliable with unstable source voltages (such as construction power or generator) and high ratio CTs due to the low H side voltages induced. AC Voltage Method: This method digs deep into transformer theory and can be used with any kind of transformer. so the meter must be monitored very closely.1V SCALE TEST LEAD R + DELTA CONNECTED GENERATOR V TEST LEAD VM2 V 15:5 A CT S H1 VM3 TEST LEAD V H2 PRIMARY CONDUCTOR X1 X2 PRIMARY CONDUCTOR H1 2000:5 CT VM1 V AC VARIAC = 15V AC X1 X2 X1 X2 T TEST LEAD Figure 5 — AC Voltage Ratio Test Circuit + 12V - 1. Connect the negative terminal of the battery to the nonpolarity of the CT winding under test. To test polarity using ac voltage. 4. Review the CT drawing carefully and note the CT polarity and meter polarity. as shown in Figure 5. Connect a variable transformer (such as a Variac) across the secondary winding of the CT. • If the CT is enclosed within a breaker. Momentarily touch or connect the battery’s positive terminal to the polarity terminal of the CT winding under test. Closely watch the needle or analog scale of the voltmeter. Most transformer polarities are marked with additive polarity that allows creation of an autotransformer by connecting X1 and H2 or H1 and X2 together. If the voltmeter kicks in the positive direction. • If the CT is enclosed within a transformer. Calculate the expected voltage using the battery voltage and the CT ratio. If the star point is not accessible. connect the voltmeter across two generator leads and short the remaining generator lead to one of the generator leads under test. 4.• If testing a window-type CT. 3. Connect a jumper between the nonpolarity of the H winding and the polarity of the X winding. If it kicks in the negative direction. 5 Figure 4 — DC Polarity Test Circuit Delta Connected Generator 2. 2. Make note of the wire and meter polarity. • If the CT is enclosed within a generator.03V 0. This happens in a fraction of a second. close the breaker and connect your voltmeter across the breaker poles. RATIO TEST VM2 = [VM1/CT ratio] VM2 = 15V / (15/5) VM2 = 5V POLARITY TEST VM3 = VM1 + VM2 VM3 = 15V + 5V VM3 = 20V 12V / (2000/5) = 0. Connect a voltmeter (VM1) across the secondary CT winding and variable transformer. connect the voltmeter across the transformer bushings associated with the CT and short the remaining bushing to the nonpolarity bushing under test. connect the voltmeter across the generator windings.

The magnetic theory involved in transformer operation is too complex to address in this article. Prove all tap combinations by using the information recorded from this test. Saturated CTs can be very deceiving when used to supply protective relays as they may operate normally at low current levels and not operate at all during fault currents.5.” The CT ratio test determines the CT accuracy. 3.1. the magnetic path inside the CT operates like a short circuit on the transmission line. Calculate the expected value. and secondary winding (load). VM2 = 0. Connect a voltmeter (VM2) across the CT primary.1 (IEEE Guide for Field-Testing of Relaying Current Transformers). but the magnetic circuit can be compared to a normal electrical circuit: the primary winding (generator). iron core (transmission line). • Extremely high current flowing through the CT (fault current).” During normal operation. Some of the following conditions can cause CT saturation: • CT secondary burden greater than rated. “Perform an excitation test on transformers used for relaying applications in accordance with ANSI C57. When a CT is saturated. but basic transformer theory applies to all transformers. the CT polarity markings are correct. If VM3 is less than VM1. During normal CT operation the highside winding (generator) supplies energy through the iron core (transmission line) to the low-side winding (load) with small losses in the transmission line. The excitation test is used to prove that the CT is not saturated and will operate within specifications at the rated burden. carry.5V RATIO TESTS 2-4 X1 X2 X3 X4 X5 V TEST 4 = X4-X5 V V V TEST 3 = X3-X5 TEST 2 = X2-X5 TEST 1 = X1-X5 TO VM2 TEST 2 = VM1 * (TEST RATIO) / (FULL RATIO) TEST 2 = 120 * 1000 / 1200 TEST 2 = 100 V TEST 3 = VM1 * (TEST RATIO) / (FULL RATIO) TEST 3 = 120 * 900 / 1200 TEST 3 = 90 V TEST 4 = VM1 * (TEST RATIO) / (FULL RATIO) TEST 4 = 120 * 500 / 1200 TEST 4 = 50 V AC V VM1 = 120V Figure 6 — Multi Ratio CT AC Ratio CT Test Connections Excitation Test In accordance with NETA specifications. (IEEE Guide for Field Testing of Relaying Current Transformers).13. You can repeat the procedure above for each tap of a multitap CT. Calculate the ratio between the two voltages (VM1 / VM2). The easiest and most accurate CT ratio test method for most applications is the voltage method and is the method we will discuss here. It is important to remember when comparing test results to the burden rating that the burden NETA WORLD 6 . Almost all of the energy supplied by the primary winding is shunted away from the secondary winding and is used to create a magnetic field inside the CT.13. 2.5V POLARITY TEST 1 VM3 = VM1 + VM2 VM3 = 120 + 0. The applied voltage must be well below the saturation voltage or there will be a significant error reported. Apply a voltage to the CT secondary and measure the secondary (VM1) and primary voltages (VM2) simultaneously. the CT operates as a nearly perfect machine with very small energy losses necessary for CT operation.5V V H1 X2-X3 = 100:5 X1-X2 = 200:5 X1-X3 = 300:5 X3-X4 = 400:5 X4-X5 = 500:5 X2-X4 = 600:5 X1-X4 = 800:5 X3-X5 = 900:5 X2-X5 = 1000:5 X1-X5 = 1200:5 H2 RATIO TEST 1 = X1-X5 TO VM2 VM2 = VM1 / CT RATIO VM2 = 120 / 240 VM2 = 0. as shown in Figure 6. (Note: VM1 and VM3 can be one voltmeter switching between positions if the test voltage remains stable. as shown in Figure 5. the test connection or the CT polarity markings are incorrect. The voltage method is also more accurate because measurements can be made directly instead of applying CTs and clip-on ammeters that add error based on their accuracy. • Current flowing through CT primaries with opencircuit secondaries. ([VM1 / CT ratio] + [VM1]). including CTs. One of the first transformer fundamentals is that the transformer ratio applies inversely to current and voltage. A 400:5 CT ratio will convert 400 primary amperes to five secondary amperes and convert 80 secondary volts to one primary volt.) Ratio-Verification Test The NETA specifications state.5 VM3 = 120. This voltage should match the CT ratio (primary / secondary). It may seem strange to use voltage to test a CT ratio. but I prefer to treat the CT taps as I would an autotransformer. “Perform a ratioverification test using the voltage or current method in accordance with ANSI C57. The steps for a ratio-verification test are as follows: 1. and apply an 80-volt voltage source than a 400-ampere current supply. Connect a voltage source (variable transformer) and voltmeter (VM1) across the CT secondary. and the results should be compared to the accuracy class. If VM3 displays the expected result. Increase the variable-transformer test voltage to a predetermined value. • DC current flowing through either winding. We apply this principle to CT testing because it is easier to locate. I apply a voltage across the maximum ratio tap and measure all remaining taps to a common point.

Convert the accuracy class to a voltage burden rating. The CT could actually have a higher rating.MUST BE ABOVE CT BURDEN RATING 1000 CT BURDEN RATING "L400" VOLTS (V) 100 CT SATURATION PHASE A PHASE B PHASE C 10 10 NORMAL OPERATING REGION WITH A LINEAR RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN VOLTAGE AND CURRENT 100 1000 10000 CURRENT (milliAmps) Figure 8 — Example Excitation Test Results 1. This test is very important and often missed in today’s world 7 Figure 7 — Excitation Test Connection Fall–Winter 2004 . 8. You must either skip the voltage step or restart the test from 0 volts if the voltage must be decreased to record a result. CT RATING 2. See Figure 8 to help evaluate the results. 4. Obtain the CT accuracy class. 7. (We will use 1000 milliamperes for this article.rating is a minimum value. 6. increase the voltage to 1000 milliamperes (saturation) and slowly decrease the voltage to zero. Connect the test equipment per Figure 7 to the first CT scheduled for test. Graph the results on a log-log graph and compare to the manufacturer’s supplied results. To desaturate the CT. Never decrease the voltage until the maximum test voltage is reached. 2. Determining Total Burden Measure current circuit burdens at transformer terminals and determine the total burden. Start from the beginning for CTs with another rating. Repeat the test using the voltage points determined in Steps 4 and 6 and record the milliamperes at each step. the CT may remain saturated. the knee of the curve must be higher than the rated burden voltage. Slowly increase the voltage until saturation. Slowly decrease the voltage to zero volts. the results may not be exactly the same. Repeat the test using the same test voltages for all CTs of the same rating. This happens often in transformer bushing applications. This transition is called the knee of the curve and is directly related to the voltage burden rating of the CT. 10. Slowly decrease the voltage to zero.5C800 H1 PRIMARY CONDUCTOR X1 X2 H2 PRIMARY CONDUCTOR A V VM1 800+ VOLTS AS PER CT RATING AC AC VARIAC AM1 TYPICAL MAX = 1000mA 5. Because every CT has different operating characteristics. but saturation could be higher or lower depending on CT construction. If manufacturer’s results are not available. A saturation test is performed by applying ac voltage to the CT secondary and increasing the voltage in steps until the CT is in saturation. Use the following steps to perform an excitation test: "KNEE" TRANSITION POINT BETWEEN NORMAL OPERATION AND SATURATED CT SATURATION CURVE REGION . Note the voltage where the current reaches 1000 milliampere. The test results are plotted on a logarithmic graph and evaluated based on the transition period between normal operation and saturation. If the voltage is turned off for any reason before the test is complete. Look for similarities and glaringly obvious differences when evaluating the results. Manufacturer’s results are often typical for a class of CT. Determine your test voltages using four equal steps to the first-noted voltage and six equal steps between the first-noted voltage and the second-noted voltage at 1. (See Part I of this article Fall 2004 issue of NETA World.0 amperes.) Watch the current and note the voltage where the current increase begins to increase dramatically.) 3. 9. although each CT may not have been tested. The test voltage is slowly decreased to zero to demagnetize the CT.

Remove the CT secondary shorting devices and remove the ground from the circuit. 2. and commercial environments. and high-voltage acceptance testing. Measure the voltage between the first CT circuit terminal and ground. Connect an ac source between the CT secondary feeder as close to the CT as possible and ground. The test applies five amperes through the secondary circuit with a known ground reference while measuring the voltage drop at each point of the circuit to ground. Slowly increase the voltage or current dial. • All connections are tight. Chris is currently a Project Manager for Valence USA. institutional. production. If current flows. Reference NETA 2001 Maintenance Testing Specifications for Electrical Power Distribution Equipment and Systems Chris Werstiuk graduated from the Electrical Engineering Technology program at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology and is a Registered Engineering Technologist and Journeyman Power System Electrician. Check the CT rating to ensure the burden is less than the nameplate value. multimeter. (A lamping kit is a 120 volt ac source with a light bulb in series. Reconnect the CT ground and check with an ohmmeter after it is installed.) No current should flow and light bulb remains off. Additional devices in one phase will cause higher voltages. Every CT circuit should be grounded at one point only and have its own path to ground per IEEE standard C57. medium-. • CTs are connected with a single ground point. commissioning.of fast track projects where the testing is broken into stages or multiple testing companies are used in different parts of the project. Investigate possible sources of ground and repeat this step until no current flows. If no current flows. It is time-consuming but only requires a voltage/current source and a voltmeter. variable transformer.2. Connect a temporary ground between the neutral of the test source and the CT star point. After all CT testing and secondary circuit wiring is complete. follow the next steps to perform a secondary-loop test via the voltage-drop method. 1. Drastic deviations from the voltage pattern should be investigated for loose connections or shorts (e. and he is comfortable in mining. a full service field service and electrical training organization. but this article is focused on the basics and will only cover the voltagedrop method. 6. Many manufacturers incorrectly daisy chain all CT grounds together contrary to this standard. plant. • CT burden ratings are not exceeded.g. • Assumptions about what the terminal point should be instead of using drawing references. 5. a second ground exists somewhere in the circuit which must be permanently removed. A lamping kit may be used as the source. He has performed low-. Analyzing the voltage-drop patterns throughout the circuit confirms the wiring is correct. After all testing has been satisfactorily completed. distribution. 8 NETA WORLD . Measure the voltage between ground and every connection. Increase the source voltage until five amperes flow in the circuit. Record the circuit burdens on your test sheet. and their imaginations. the ground is incorrectly applied or the circuit is incomplete. but the difference between devices should be consistent between phases. generating. • Assumptions about where the terminal point is instead of reading the designation. 3. Any increase in voltage should be immediately investigated. 4. The measured voltage patterns should be similar to the other two phases in the circuit if they are identical. Ohm’s law plus the measure of the voltage drop at the source will give us the burden impedance. pipeline. Repeat Steps 2 through 5 for the other two CT phases. There are many ways of performing this test. Divide the voltage by the current to determine the burden in ohms (Ohms = Volts / Amperes). Multiply this number by the measured current to obtain the voltampere burden (VA = Volts * Amperes). we often forget that the technicians before us were frequently limited to a lantern battery. turn the ac source off and remove all test leads. Conclusion Although the sophisticated test equipment of modern test technicians makes all of our lives easier.. • Reverse polarity connections. 7. The voltage should drop incrementally as you work through the circuit. The most common problems found are: • Unstable source voltages. His experience is varied.13. utility. • CTs are not left open circuit if not used. and maintenance testing at various locations throughout the Americas. We can use their example to complete the job when our test set malfunctions or is damaged. each with its own merits and pitfalls. single copper strand accidentally connected between terminals). This test is the final-proof test used to ensure that: • CTs are not energized with shorting devices installed if used for metering or protection.

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